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Israeli bus removes Arabic announcements

Palestinians and some Jews have branded the decision racist and vowed to protest until Arabic is restored

Gulf News

Ramallah: An Israeli decision to remove electronic announcements in Arabic for a new fleet of buses put in service in a Palestinian Bedouin-dominated town in southern 1948 areas has sparked calls to protest.

The Israeli Ministry of Transportation approved the removal of electronic announcements in Arabic from buses, after Jewish residents complained.

Several Jewish members of the city hall rejected the decision, branding it racist, and demanded the immediate restoration of the Arabic language alongside the Hebrew language for the bus announcements.

“The Israeli decision is an attack on coexistence in the Al Naqab Peninsula,” said Atta Abu Madiyam, the deputy mayor of Rahat, a Bedouin city located only a few kilometres from Beir Al Sa’eb city.

“This racist decision undermines the coexistence that prevails in the Naqab Peninsula, and in particular in Beir Al Sa’eb,” he said.

“Both Palestinians and Jews will come out in protest if the decision is not reversed.”

The city of Beir Al Sa’eb is the commercial and transportation hub for more than 150,000 Bedouin in the region.